Detailed Guidelines On Crossing The International Border Without Problems

by Mohammed Burman | 27/02/2019
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Driving through an international border is never an easy task with numerous things to pay attention to. Below are some helpful tips which can help you successfully cross an international border with your car.

General tips

Take a medical checkup

Long-hour driving and the sudden weather alteration can have a negative impact on your health, which makes any irregularities in your blood sugar level or blood pressure escalate and become serious health problems. So, the first thing you should do before starting a long journey through a border is to get a thorough medical checkup to ensure that you are in good health condition to provide the utmost safety for yourself and other co-passengers.

Moreover, remember to bring along your health cover when going to a foreign nation and make sure that it is valid. Since health service in a foreign country is often very costly, a health cover can save you a lot in case you are sick when abroad.

medical checkup

Being in a good health condition can ensure the utmost safety for yourself and the other passengers

Give your car a careful service

Not only do you need to be in a perfect health condition but your car also needs to be completely healthy before you commence your journey. It is highly recommended that you have all the tyres replaced even if the existing ones are still usable for a few thousand kms more. Furthermore, you should also have all the fluids renewed and all the essential components carefully inspected. If possible, you can also bring along extra units of small but important parts such as wiper blades, bulbs and coolant, etc.

cars serviced in a dealership

You should get your car serviced carefully before starting your cross-the-border journey

Pay attention to the expiry date of your passport

Passport is something that everyone MUST have when going abroad in most cases. Particularly, some nations require your passport to be valid for at least 6 months when you make an entry. So, you should check to ensure that you have had all the old documents renewed before commencing your journey.

Indian passport brown colour

Make sure that your passport is still valid on the starting day of your journey

Keep all the necessary documents handy

Before commencing the trip across the international border, you need to make sure you have carried all the necessary documents with you. It is a good idea to prepare a folder with all the documents neatly placed in it. While most nations require a passport to make an entry, some neighbouring ones only request that you have an “Entry Permit”, which can be obtained right at the international border. For instance, to go to Bhutan, people with the nationality of India, Bangladesh and the Maldives do not need a passport or a visa, but an entry permit is an indispensable document. Besides, remember to carry your personal identity evidence and vehicle documents.

You should also make copies of all the documents in advance. At most checkpoints, you will be asked to show the original copies of all the documents.

Aadhar card

You should ensure that all the documents are ready before your trip

Carefully prepare your information

The next thing you should bear in mind is to clearly know your route map and the outline of your stops. Moreover, you are also requested to know the address and how long you will stay at each stop. You will need to prepare a copy of the itinerary if you are going to an official event or an invitation if you are attending a wedding.

a car on the right of the road signs

Clearly knowing your road trip is a requirement in a long journey

Tidy up your car

Not only does a tidy car help you avoid being suspected but it is also easier to be examined by the security officer. As a result, make sure that you only pack the most necessary items in your car to go through the security checks without any problems. Also, make sure you remove any forbidden attachments from your tablets, laptops and cellphones since all of them will get inspected. So before, commencing the long journey, make sure that you thoroughly clean your vehicle.

tidy car seats

A tidy car helps you pass through the checkpoints more easily

Remember that honesty is the best policy

You run the risk of being not allowed to cross the border if you lie about your entry purpose or identity. Therefore, always be truthful when answering all the questions from the security officers, who examine very carefully whether you lie or not. If they find there is any abnormality in your answer, you will have difficulty in crossing the border.

Withdraw your application properly

All of your documents and your interactions with the officers are documented, which should be used in making the further decision on whether a driver can cross the border or not. If you, unfortunately, have difficulty in crossing the border, you had better politely and calmly withdraw your application. You will run the risk of having problems entering that nation again if you forget to withdraw your application.

Also read4 Amazing Practical Driving Tips For Women

Information on entering some neighbouring countries

India shares the same border with six other countries. Below, we will provide you with the details about visiting them by car.


At any time of the year, you can drive from India to Nepal without any prior entry permit. It takes drivers no more than 30 minutes to finish all the required procedures at Sunauli border in Uttar Pradesh. Nepal also acts as a bridge connecting India to China, the Middle East and Europe.


Indian nationals are not required to carry a passport when driving to Bhutan. However, it is necessary to have themselves registered at the immigration post at Phuntsholing border and then their vehicles registered at the transport department, which may take three hours since the two buildings are separate from each other. If you intend to visit the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu, you have to hold another permit. Although Bhutan shares the land border with China, you cannot directly get to China from Indian through Bhutan since the two countries do not have any land connectivity.


To enter Bangladesh by car, you need to pay for a deposit of 200% of your car value to attain permission (a carnet).


Like Bangladesh, driving to Myanmar requires a deposit 200% of your car value for a carnet. You can also use this carnet to drive from Myanmar to Thailand. You must also prepare an itinerary and lodge bookings in advance. Hiring a local Burmese guide from the Ministry of Myanmar Tourism is also compulsory. Driver and vehicle information needed to be handed over to the country’s tourism ministry no less than 30 days prior to the starting day.


It is the most time consuming and even most difficult to drive from India to China. The only way to drive to China is through Nepal. You can expect to spend up to two months preparing all the necessary documents to drive to China. Special entry permits for the Indian vehicles and the valid temporary driving license in China are provided by Lhasa. To make matters worse, your permits can be cancelled without any refunds by the Chinese authorities.


An Indian registered car cannot enter to enter Pakistan in any cases. Foreigners who wish to enter India through Pakistan must use the Wagah Border. On the other hand, the Indian people are not allowed to drive to Pakistan through any border.

Refer to the table below for further information about visiting the six countries above.

 Required documents 
 Any ID evidence with photo
 Passport/Adhaar card/Voter ID/ (Driving license unaccepted)
 Valid Passport, Visa, Vehicle documents, Carnet, Itinerary, Third party vehicle insurance
 Valid Passport, Visa, Carnet, original vehicle documents & Special overland permit & permissions
Valid Passport, Visa, original vehicle documents & Special overland permit & permissions
 No entry allowance
 Not required
 Not required
 Bhutanese Ngultrum
 Bangladeshi Taka
 Burmese Kyat
 Chinese Yuan
 1 INR = 1.60 NPR
 1 INR = 1 Bhutanese Ngultrum
 1 INR = 1.17 Bangladeshi Taka
 1 INR = 17.65 Burmese Kyat
 10.21 INR = 1 Chinese Yuan


Also readTips for first-time car buyers in India

Above is a detailed guideline on how to cross the international borders from India without any difficulties. Hope that these tips will help you cross the border in your car in a legal, safe and pleasant way.

Read more tips and guides from IndianAuto

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